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March 14, 1914

THE DANGER TO THE MAINTENANCE OF HIGH STANDARDS FROM EXCESSIVE FORMALISM

Author Affiliations

President of Harvard University BOSTON

JAMA. 1914;LXII(11):823-826. doi:10.1001/jama.1914.02560360003002
Abstract

Every professional school ought to have two distinct objects — one the recruiting of the best talent that can be obtained among young men, and the other giving to them the best preparation for the career in which they are about to take part. These two objects are not of necessity inconsistent, but they do not always go together, and neither of them should be allowed to obscure the other. It is, indeed, one of the characteristic differences between education on the two sides of the Atlantic that Europe tends to a system of competition which selects the stronger men and eliminates the weak, while we, more democratic in spirit, fix our attention almost exclusively on the process of training that the men are to be put through. In this paper premedical education will be discussed from both points of view.

It would be presumptuous in me to question the

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